‘Blue Bloods’ Star Tom Selleck Explained Why People Thought Show Would Fail, Said CBS Takes Show ‘for Granted’

by Keeli Parkey

In October 2016, “Blue Bloods” star Tom Selleck sat down with the SAG-AFTRA Foundation to discuss the show and his decades-long acting career. When this one-on-one interview with the popular actor aired, “Blue Bloods” was entering its seventh season. The show’s 12th season will debut on Oct. 1, 2021.

During the interview, Selleck shared his feelings about how CBS – the network that airs the hit family cop drama – has treated the show.

“Well, you know, we’ve been kind of the little engine that could that CBS, I think, kind of takes for granted,” Tom Selleck said.

One reason the “Blue Bloods” star felt this way is based on the day of the week and the time when the network decided to air the show.

“They put us on on Friday night at 10 o’clock. Everybody thought – it was the highest testing pilot they had – but they stuck us there and everybody thought we were doomed. And, we kind of said, ‘Well, if you build it, they’ll come.'”

According to Tom Selleck that timeslot is not an ideal one by any means.

“Friday night, for those of you who don’t know it was the worst night in television,” the “Blue Bloods” star also said. “And, 10 o’clock is death. Nine o’clock shows are supposed to be the deal. …”

Despite the Timeslot ‘Blue Bloods’ Received the Show Succeeded, According to Tom Selleck

Even though CBS did not give “Blue Bloods” the timeslot Tom Selleck thought it deserved, the show did succeed. And, it had continued to gain an audience when he sat down for that 2016 interview.

“I don’t know what happened to the time. It seems like we’re in about our third year,” Tom Selleck said. “I’m very proud of the show. I know everybody talks ratings. Yes, we’re in the seventh year. We’re still growing. We had a higher rating in this premiere – the one you saw – than we did last year.”

A key factor in the success of “Blue Bloods” is its characters, according to Tom Selleck. Focusing on characters is a reason why another of the actor’s television shows also succeeded.

“Because it is a character-driven show, which is my bent and I mean that’s why [Magnum, P.I. is] still on the air in about a hundred countries – other than the shorts, which are a little out of style – it’s a character-driven show,” Selleck said. “It’s not about issues or anything else. It’s about these people and because it’s about the people, problems of the human condition don’t go away, and it still translates.”

You can watch Tom Selleck talk about “Blue Bloods” below. His comments about how some people predicted the show would be a failure begin around the 10:30 mark of the video.